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State of Online Gaming 2020

Blog Post by Charlie Kraus

March 11, 2020

Online gaming is increasing in popularity as a top entertainment option, especially among younger audiences. This year our State of Online Gaming 2020 report revealed growing trends such as a continued rise in binge-gaming and mobile gaming as well as new console-less gaming services gaining traction with gamers globally. In addition, more gamers say they aspire to become professional gamers, and important shifts were found in viewing consumption of both online and broadcast TV sports compared to online video game play. And as always, performance is paramount.

Binge-Watching Increases

Globally, gamers reported their longest consecutive playing session lasted four hours, 36 minutes, a seven percent increase over 2019. Binge-watching times are longest in the U.S., Japan and Germany at over five hours, the largest increase is in Italy and the only decrease is in South Korea.

 

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What is the longest you have ever consecutively played video games at one time?

Console-less Gaming Services are Gaining Traction

Globally 44 percent of gamers are interested in console-less gaming. Gamers in India are significantly more interested in console-less gaming, with almost 83 percent willing to subscribe, in contrast with Japan with only 21 percent willing to subscribe.

 

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Figure 41: When available in your area, would you subscribe to a live streaming console-less gaming service (such as Google Stadia)?

Price and Performance are Major Factors in Subscribing to Console-Less Gaming Service

Price sensitivity and performance issues are the dominant reasons cites as most likely to prevent subscribing to a console-less service.

 

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Figure 45: Of the following options, which is most likely to prevent you from subscribing to a live streaming console-less gaming service (such as Google Stadia)?

More Than 38 Percent of Gamers Would Like to Go Pro

Prize money from gaming tournaments is approaching salaries in traditional professional sports, resulting in consideration of gaming as a possible career. 38 percent would if they could support themselves by doing so.

 

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Figure 38: Would you quit your job if you could support yourself as a professional video game player?

Watching TV and Movies Versus Playing Video Games

There are clear preferences by age groups, where those under age 45 prefer to play video games, and those over 46 prefer watching TV shows and movies. There will be profound impacts on ad supported TV over time as younger viewers mature and become the dominant generations in the entertainment market.

 

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Figure 48: Would you rather play video games or watch TV shows and movies?

 

What does this data mean to the online gaming industry? Provide gamers with the highest-quality online experiences to keep them playing longer and coming back for more. To ensure they receive the fastest download speeds for a new game release, utilize the services of a Content Delivery Network (CDN), with global capacity and reach. Fortunately, Limelight makes this easy. Limelight’s solution for Gaming is a powerful, integrated cloud-based workflow that enables you to deliver your game experiences to your users reliably and consistently while ensuring optimum performance of downloads and video streaming. To address the performance concerns about console-less gaming services, consider edge services to position compute near gamers to reduce game interaction latency.

 

Contact us to learn more about how Limelight can help you solve your online gaming challenges.